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Sweet bay


Lauraceae Laurus nobilis L.

Source: Magness et al. 1971

The sweet bay or laurel is a small evergreen tree, native to the Mediterranean region, with thick, simple, dull-green, lanceolate leaves. It is widely grown as an ornamental, both in the open and in tubs. It is the laurel of history and poetry, long a symbol of victory. The leaves have a pleasant odor and a bitter, aromatic taste. They are used both fresh and dried in cookery to impart flavor. No data are available as to U.S. production, but it is limited.

The bay-rum or bayberry of commerce is from the leaves of Pimenta racemosa Mill.

Last update June 28, 1996 bha